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Reviews Written by
Nick Brett (Wiltshire, England)
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Impulse: The Lightship Chronicles (Lightship Chronicles 1)
Impulse: The Lightship Chronicles (Lightship Chronicles 1)
by Dave Bara
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Good debut, 29 Mar. 2015
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Space Navy action with a few other things chuckd in. Our hero here is Royalty also serving in the Space Navy who gets pointed to another critical mission when a ship is atttacked.
The scenario we are presented with is a loose alliance of worlds using technology that has been provided by Earth mentors ("Historians") but without full disclosure of their full workings and capability. There is talk of historic conflict between races, of a view between church and science and so on. And the workings of the technology is slightly confusing to us readers, we just have to get on with it. And the author chucks in some relationship stuff as well, which I think wasn't needed to be honest.
But, in fairness, the author avoids some of th eobvious pitfalls and can write pretty well. Not much gets resolved in this, it is very much the first in a series and I think with this first book behind him the author and this series can only get better.


LCD Alarm Clock / Calendar / Thermometer / Humidity Meter
LCD Alarm Clock / Calendar / Thermometer / Humidity Meter
Offered by LTZmart
Price: £3.15

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic value and does the job brilliantly, 25 Mar. 2015
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I have seen a mix of reviews on this one but I am very impressed.

Our office is either too hot or too cold and I wanted something to provide factual evidence to my complaints and I went for this. It was almost too cheap to be true, including delivery, but on receipt we got it going (some slightly difficult English on the instructions) and for a week now it has been fantastic in tracking the temperature in here. Utterly fantastic value.
Since you ask, it is currently telling me it is 2:38pm, 24.2 degrees and the humidity is 20%


Alien - Sea of Sorrows (Book 2) (Alien Trilogy 2)
Alien - Sea of Sorrows (Book 2) (Alien Trilogy 2)
by James A. Moore
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.39

4.0 out of 5 stars Solid Aliens novel, 18 Mar. 2015
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Following on from Tim Lebbon’s first instalment in this ‘official’ trilogy we now have the second. It is not a direct follow on as it moves the action forward a few centuries. LV178 is now terra-formed but there is a bit of the planet that has an area with strange deposits that are confusing the terra-formers. Decker has been brought in to troubleshoot and it turns out he is an empath and descended from Ripley herself.

After an accident and recovery on Earth, the Corporation discover Decker may be able to ‘sense’ aliens and in their quest to capture one, he is forced back with a bunch of mercenaries. At that point the book becomes very much like the second film, which is not a bad thing but does follow a well-trod path.

But Decker is fleshed out quite well and the empath bit is used well, the aliens are what you would expect (and you get the occasional perspective from them) and the action is what you would hope and expect.

Very enjoyable and any fan of the series should welcome this.


For Valour: (Nick Stone Book 16)
For Valour: (Nick Stone Book 16)
by Andy McNab
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £8.90

3.0 out of 5 stars Weak entry in the Stone series, 18 Mar. 2015
Andy McNab’s latest Nick Stone thriller has an interesting premise and any link back to the SAS always has potential.

Here, an SAS soldier is killed during training and it looks like there may be a cover up of something bigger. Stone has a connection and starts his own investigation, uncovering links to the past.

I found this readable, but one of the weaker Stone novels. Lots of traveling to different countries at the drop of a hat, some pretty poor tradecraft from Stone and a final ‘reveal’ that is very underwhelming. The frustration is that there was probably a good story in here, it just feels that the author didn’t spend enough time polishing it and letting the plot drive the story.


Time and Time Again
Time and Time Again
by Ben Elton
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining time travel story, 18 Mar. 2015
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This review is from: Time and Time Again (Hardcover)
A time travel novel based on the premise of a limited option to visit a single event to change history.

A slightly old fashioned premise involving Isaac Newton, Cambridge University and secret societies presents us with an adventurer/ex-soldier being sent back to change the course of history. Here, preventing the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand and thus ensuring WW1 does not happen.

So we follow our hero back in time and find if he can change history and if so, what will be the consequence. And can he avoid making minor changes that might have a bigger than expected impact?

There are questions (the butterfly effect) about the change of history and author Ben Elton manages to deliver some surprises and twists and turns in his story. It’s pretty enjoyable and a lot better than some I have read of a similar ilk.


The Night Crew
The Night Crew
by Brian Haig
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.64

5.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking military legal thriller, 17 Mar. 2015
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This review is from: The Night Crew (Paperback)
I was delighted to see a new Sean Drummond thriller from Brian Haig, and it is both topical and intelligent.
Drummond finds himself into the defence team of a female soldier accused (with very strong evidence) of committing atrocities against Iraqi prisoners at the Al Basari military prison. A meaty and important subject that touches on a number of issues and perspectives and the balance of justice and the ‘big picture’ reality.
There is also a who-dun-it tucked in there too.
I think Haig is a very talented writer who gets it right with a witty and principled main character and puts him in the midst of intelligent plotting. There is always more than meets the eye to this series and the military experience of the author shines through in terms of authenticity and understanding of how the system actually works.
Thought provoking and enjoyable reading.


The Shrine (A short story)
The Shrine (A short story)
Price: £0.00

4.0 out of 5 stars A gift from the author, 13 Mar. 2015
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A generous gift from the author to whet our appetites for the new book that is almost upon us. In a fairly short story we are introduced to Tullus a soldier off to take up a new post on promotion. This is an interlude to the journey and he finds that good luck brings its own challenges...
It is good fun and a nice intro, although we don't yet see what will differentiate Tullus from the other steely eyed Roman warriors of his ilk but I am looking forward to finding out.


Those Above (The Empty Throne)
Those Above (The Empty Throne)
by Daniel Polansky
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A hard slog with little reward, 4 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This was a surprising chore. Confusing, overly complex and with very few likeable characters. A human world has been enslaved by aliens and society has become split into those who have been subjugated and those who still live free but may be gearing up for war. The story highlights four individuals, a street troublemaker, a soldier, a scheming politician and a senior servant to one of the conquerors.

But it is a mess, you do not engage with any of the characters, and the world-building is confusing at best. You shouldn’t have to work this hard to read a book that ultimately fails to reward the effort.

The author has an undeniable turn of phrase and particular style, but this is perhaps overused in the descriptive narrative at the expense of pace being injected into the story. By the end I really didn’t care about anyone and was not in the least bit engaged, as such it is very unlikely I will pick up the next in the series.


The Escape (John Puller Series)
The Escape (John Puller Series)
by David Baldacci
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.00

3.0 out of 5 stars Bit of a mess, 23 Feb. 2015
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The third in the John Puller series. The first two were carbon copies of Lee Child's Jack Reacher series, embarrassingly so (and Lee Child did respond to this in a recent Jack Reacher story) but they were quite reasonable. In way they provided an unofficial "Reacher fix".

Here in the third story, Baldacci seen to have forgotten to make his character like Reacher and instead has him back as a military investigator and acting differently to the previous novels.

Here, his smarter brother who is banged up for being a traitor, escapes and Puller is asked to help track him down. The more Puller looks into the escape and his brother's trial, the more suspicious he gets that something is wrong. Of course there has to be an attractive female and sure enough a female intelligence is assigned to work with him. No surprise there.

This kicks off quite well, despite Puller no longer acting like Reacher but the further the book goes on the dafter it gets, the plot gets more convoluted and the characters more unbelievable. It does feel that David Baldacci might be beyond his bestseller by date. Three stars, but only just.


Freeze Dried Diced Strawberry 100g
Freeze Dried Diced Strawberry 100g
Offered by Lio-Licious/Mountain House
Price: £8.50

5.0 out of 5 stars Great for cereal, 22 Feb. 2015
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Hard to get hold of outside of the Internet. but I really like these to add to cereal. They make any bland cereal suddenly interesting! Not cheap, but quite a big pack and they do make the bland fantastic.


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